Toronto at Colorado

Venue: Pepsi Center
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The Toronto Maple Leafs still have a chance to earn their first postseason berth in seven years. Beating a Colorado Avalanche team that's settling into its role as spoiler would help.

Toronto looks to run its winning streak to three Thursday night when it faces the Avalanche, who will also try to win their third straight following their first victory in Denver in nearly two months.

Five points back of eighth-place Buffalo in the Eastern Conference, Toronto (33-31-10) is seeking its first playoff appearance since 2004.

If a 3-0 victory over Minnesota on Tuesday was any indication, the Leafs could make a run at the Sabres, who visit Toronto on Monday in a critical matchup.

"You could just see the energy in our whole team," coach Ron Wilson said after his team improved to 14-6-5 since the All-Star break. "It wasn't just the goalie (James Reimer). Everybody was on top of things."

Reimer made 29 saves to improve to 7-0-1 with a 2.16 goals-against average in his last nine road games, and the Maple Leafs' top two lines made solid contributions after totaling two goals in the previous four contests.

Mikhail Grabovski had a goal and an assist, Joffrey Lupul scored, Nikolai Kulemin recorded two assists and Clarke MacArthur, Tyler Bozak and Phil Kessel each set up a goal.

The Maple Leafs, 7-2-2 in their last 11 on the road, last won three in a row during a four-game run Jan. 6-11.

Colorado has won two straight following a 1-18-2 stretch that ended any hopes of a second consecutive playoff appearance. The Avalanche (28-36-8), however, could still have a hand in determining which teams advance to the postseason.

"We have to play the role of spoiler right now, and we have to take pride in that," goaltender Brian Elliott said after Colorado snapped a franchise record-tying eight-game home skid with a 5-4 shootout win over Columbus on Tuesday.

The Avalanche, who ended a season high-tying 10-game losing streak Saturday, forced overtime Tuesday on Daniel Winnick's power-play goal with three seconds left in regulation.

Colorado last won three straight during a season-best 6-0-0 streak Dec. 10-19.

"Were not going to lay over and die here," All-Star center Matt Duchene said after scoring twice in the third period of the Avs' first home win since Jan. 24.

Toronto snapped a three-game road skid in this series in its last visit to Denver, winning 7-4 on Jan. 29, 2009.

The Avs, winners of four of six versus the Maple Leafs, posted a 4-1 victory in Toronto in the teams' last meeting Oct. 13, 2009.

Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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Game Odds
AwayLineHomeLine
Toronto -115 Colorado -105
Standings
Team Standings W L OT Pts L 10
Toronto6th Atlantic 38368842-8-0
Colorado1st Central 522281127-1-2

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Injuries
Toronto
PlayerInjury
J LupulKnee
 
Colorado
PlayerInjury
T BarrieKnee
 
Scoring Leaders
Toronto
Skaters
PlayerGAPTS+/-PIM
Grabovski2827551256
Kessel282755-2020
MacArthur203454-537
Kulemin262652722
Bozak121628-2612
Phaneuf71926-482
Armstrong81523-138
Lupul101323-1229
Brent81220-229
Schenn41418-434
 
Colorado
Skaters
PlayerGAPTS+/-PIM
Duchene253358-923
Stastny203454-1052
Hejduk192948-2318
Liles63743-833
Jones241640226
Fleischmann121931218
Johnson81826-1652
Porter13922-1020
Winnik101222135
O'Reilly91120-916
 
 
 
Series Game Log
DateLocationResults
Oct 9 @ Minnesota 
Oct 11Colorado 
Feb 7 @ Minnesota 
Feb 28Colorado 
Mar 8 @ Minnesota 
Other Games
Pitt 2 Final
Phi 1
Mon 0 Final
Bos 7
Ott 2 Final
NYR 1
Atl 2 Final
NYI 1
Edm 0 Final
StL 4
Ana 4 Final
Nash 5
Colu 0 Final
Pho 3
SJ 3 Final
LA 4